Friday, December 10, 2010

Can Federal Healthcare Managers do better than the FAA?

The Associated Press reported that the FAA has lost key information on about 119,000 aircraft. 
The Federal Aviation Administration is missing key information on who owns one-third of the 357,000 private and commercial aircraft in the U.S. - a gap the agency fears could be exploited by terrorists and drug traffickers.
And somehow the same bloated federal bureaucracy is supposed to manage our healthcare?  The report doesn't help to instill confidence in our federal government’s management success stories, or rather lack there of.  Even the California DMV does a better job! 

Now THAT should scare you!!



Thursday, December 9, 2010

Caltrans Surveyor Receives Medal of Valor

Thanks to Ryan Versteeg, PLS for bringing this to my attention!
(http://www.edhat.com/site/tidbit.cfm?nid=44332)
SAN LUIS OBISPO COUNTY - Caltrans District 5 Surveyor Robert "Bob" MacKenzie has received the Governor's Gold Medal of Valor for his heroic actions on Hwy. 88 near Kirkwood, CA on the morning of Nov. 30, 2009. The medal was presented by California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger at a statewide ceremony in Sacramento on Dec. 7.

MacKenzie and his wife, who live in Los Osos observed a man waiving his arms stating that a car had just crashed over the embankment. MacKenzie went over the guardrail and proceeded 75 to 100 feet down a slippery, snow covered, rocky mountainside.

He found an elderly man standing next to an overturned station wagon with his wife trapped in the front seat of the car with one of her arms pinned under the right front windshield. He was wearing shorts and tennis shoes and standing in about a foot of snow. MacKenzie found a rubber mat which was thrown from the car and placed it on the snow allowing the man to stand on it in order to prevent hypothermia and/or frostbite.

MacKenzie returned to the woman and covered her hand with a snow boot he found in the car while trying to keep her comfortable and treating her for shock. He covered the woman with his jacket and stayed with her for the next 20 minutes in freezing temperatures until rescuers reached the scene.

MacKenzie described to rescuers how the woman was trapped which allowed them to make a single trip down the steep embankment with the proper tools and first aid supplies. MacKenzie remained at the scene alongside emergency personnel during the entire extraction which took approximately 3 hours.

The woman was removed from the vehicle and taken by air to a hospital in Reno, NV. Because of weight restrictions, her husband could not accompany his wife to the hospital.

MacKenzie offered to drive her husband to the hospital, a two hour trip which was made in the opposite direction that Mackenzie and his wife were traveling.

The actions by MacKenzie during this incident were over and above the call of duty and were directly responsible for preventing further injury or death.

"The State of California is proud of the actions of Caltrans District 5 employee Robert "Bob" MacKenzie for his extraordinary act of service above and beyond the normal call of duty or service. He is a deserving recipient of the Governor's Gold Medal of Valor," said Caltrans District 5 Director Rich Krumholz.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Reason.tv: Great Moments in Unintended Consequences



Reason.tv presents Great Moments in Unintended Consequences!

All actions have unanticipated side effects, but government acting through regulation or legislation is particularly adept at creating disastrous unintended consequences.

Great Moments in Unintended Consequences takes a look at three instances of epic government facepalm: Osborne Reef, Corn Ethanol Subsidies, and a particular clause in ObamaCare that is already doing more harm than good.

Approximately 3 minutes.

Produced by Austin Bragg.

Monday, December 6, 2010

George Will: Treaty in a time warp

WASHINGTON -- The Framers of the Constitution, a nuisance regretted by most modern presidents, gave the legislative branch -- another indignity inflicted on presidents, as they see it -- an important role in making foreign policy. The Framers did so by, among other provisions, requiring the Senate's two-thirds (today, 67 votes) consent to treaties. The Framers' wisdom is confirmed by Barack Obama's impatience with senators reluctant to ratify, during Congress' lame-duck session, the New START treaty pertaining to Russia's nuclear weapons.

The administration's ardor for ratification is understandable, as is Russia's. The president needs a success somewhere; Russia needs psychotherapy. It longs to be treated as what it no longer is, a superpower, and it likes the treaty's asymmetries.

It is more reasonable to worry about the security of Russia's weapons than about their numbers. New START, however, pertains primarily to the numbers. It requires the reduction of strategic weapons and launchers. Concerning the former, Russia's economic anemia is already forcing it into arms reductions. Concerning the latter, Russia already is below the levels the treaty would impose on America.

Deeply informed and rationally skeptical, Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., is arguing from the position of increased strength created on Nov. 2: Come January, there will be six more Republican senators. He implicitly -- and lucidly -- treats Russia itself as of secondary importance in the treaty. He is using his enhanced leverage primarily to increase the administration's commitment to modernization of the U.S. nuclear arsenal: All nuclear weapons decay, and no U.S. weapon has been tested since 1992.

"All the lab folks will tell you" modernization is imperative, Kyl said in a telephone interview Monday. Which may be why, he said, "for significant periods of time" Republican senators were "denied meaningful contact" with weapons laboratory scientists.

The administration contends that even delaying ratification will reduce Russia's helpfulness regarding Iran's nuclear weapons program. This suggests, strangely, that Russia has been significantly helpful. And it assumes, implausibly, that Russia's interest in preventing neighboring Iran from having nuclear weapons is less than its interest in modifying the strategic arms balance with an America that is no longer a strategic adversary. Defense Secretary Robert Gates says Russia is no military threat to America or America's allies.

The administration says ratification is urgent to reinstall verification. But when the previous treaty expired last December, Obama and Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev said they would continue "in the spirit of" the expired treaty. If verification is suddenly increasingly important, is Russia decreasingly trustworthy?

When nations are enemies, they use arms negotiations less to mutually limit arms than to channel arms competition in strategically advantageous directions. So real arms control is impossible until it is unimportant. Until, that is, dangers disappear. So, ratification of New START is possible. But to call it urgent is silly; to call it advisable would be premature, pending completion of the Senate's advise-and-consent role, which should include clarifying stipulations in any ratifying resolution.

At Russia's insistence, the treaty contains language that some Republicans think does -- and the Obama administration insists does not --couple limits of offensive and defensive systems. If it does, Republicans should oppose New START; if the language is, as the administration says, without force, it should be deleted. The Senate made ratification of the Jay Treaty (1795) and the Panama Canal Treaty (1978) contingent on modifying some language.

The impertinence of mere senators modifying their handiwork will scandalize the Cold War arms control clerisy, who are still with us. These custodians of humanity's salvation, these speakers of an argot (SLBMs, ICBMs, MIRVs, etc.) more arcane to the laity than Latin was to 14th-century peasants, are marvelously unimpressed by the events of 1991. If, when the Soviet Union disappeared, Russia had disintegrated until only the Moscow metropolitan area remained, the clerisy would be earnestly negotiating arms agreements with that city's police force.

In this era of astonishing emerging markets such as China, India and Brazil, Russia is a perverse miracle of arrested development. It is receding because it still has an essentially hunter-gatherer economy, based on extraction industries (oil, gas, minerals). Aside from vodka, what Russian-manufactured export matters? Don't say caviar; it is extracted from sturgeon.

America's domestic policy is bedeviled by reactionary liberalism, whose adherents resist any diminution of any entitlement. Barack Obama's tumble into a time warp -- his overinvestment in an arms agreement with the emaciated Russian bear -- proves that reactionary liberalism does not end at the water's edge.

George Will's e-mail address is georgewill@washpost.com.

(c) 2010, Washington Post Writers Group

Greg Sebourn

Orange County Bail Bonds

The Beauty of a Storm

The Beauty of a Storm
Orange County, Ca.

My Grandma - A Eulogy

LET'S TALK ABOUT 1914 FOR A MOMENT.



FOR STARTERS, GRANDMA WAS BORN TUESDAY, DECEMBER 22, 1914 IN HER FAMILY'S ATWOOD RANCH HOUSE.



IT IS WORTH NOTING THOSE ALSO BORN IN 1914:

JACK LALANNE

JOE DIMAGGIO

DANNY THOMAS



AND WHO DIED IN 1914:

JOHN MUIR, THE FAMOUS NATURALIST FOR WHICH NUMEROUS ROADS, PARKS, HOTELS, AND NATURE RESERVES ARE NAMED.



IT IS ALSO WORTH NOTING THAT IN 1914 WOODROW WILSON SIGNS MOTHER'S DAY PROCLAMATION AND BABE RUTH MAKES HIS MAJOR LEAGUE DEBUT WITH THE RED SOX. MOTHER'S DAY AND BASEBALL- TWO OF MY FAVORITES!! (PERHAPS HER NICKNAME "BABE" CAME FROM BABE RUTH???)



GRANDMA WAS BORN INTO A PERIOD OF TIME FILLED WITH TURMOIL. IN JUNE OF 1914 ARCHDUKE FRANZS FERDINAND WAS ASSASSINATED. WITHIN ONE MONTH WORLD WAR I RAGED ACROSS EUROPE. TWO DAYS AFTER HER BIRTH HOWEVER, GERMAN AND BRITISH TROOPS INTERRUPTED WWI TO CELEBRATE CHRISTMAS. (PERHAPS THEY PAUSE KNOWING THAT A GREAT WOMAN WAS BORNE) WORLD WAR I CONTINUED UNTIL THE TREATY OF VERSAILLES IN 1919.



ALTHOUGH SHE WAS ONLY 5 YEARS OLD, SHE SAW THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS CREATED AND THE 19TH AMENDMENT WAS APPROVED BY THE U.S. CONGRESS GUARANTEEING THE RIGHTS OF WOMEN TO VOTE.



SHE LIVED THROUGH MANY NOTABLE EVENTS. LIKE THE 1933 LONG BEACH EARTHQUAKE OR WHEN ATWOOD FLOODED ALONG WITH MOST OF ORANGE COUNTY IN 1938 AND THE FLOOD-WATERS CLAIMED MORE THAN 50 PEOPLE, 43 OF WHICH WERE FROM ATWOOD! ALL OF THIS DURING A TIME THAT WE READ ABOUT IN SCHOOL AND KNOWN AS "THE GREAT DEPRESSION". SOMEWHERE IN ALL OF THAT SHE FOUND THE LOVE OF HER LIFE, GRANDPA LEO, GRADUATED HIGH SCHOOL, GOT MARRIED, AND HAD KIDS!



THEN THERE WAS WORLD WAR II. FROM PEARL HARBOR TO HIROSHIMA, GRANDMA WAS RAISING MY UNCLE BOB AND MOM ARLINE. WITH AIR-RAID SIRENS AND BLACKOUTS SHE WAS A WIFE AND MOTHER. WHAT A TIME TO RAISE CHILDREN! I BET GRANDMA'S PARENTS WERE ABEL TO TELL HER A THING OR TWO ABOUT RAISING KIDS IN WARTIME.



GRANDMA WAS THERE WHEN THE BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA HELD THEIR 3RD ANNUAL NATIONAL JAMBOREE IN 1953. SHE SAW AIRBASES OPEN IN '42 AND CLOSE IN '99. SHE WATCHED WALTER KNOTT START UP HIS BERRY FARM AND WALT DISNEY TURN ORANGE GROVES AND STRAWBERRY PATCHES INTO DISNEYLAND!



SHE SAW THE HORSE AND CARRIAGE FADE AWAY INTO HISTORY AND SPACE TRAVEL EXPLODE BEFORE HER WITH THE FIRST LUNAR LANDING. JUST IMAGINE HOW MUCH TECHNOLOGY HAS CHANGED OVER THE LAST 100 YEARS. FROM TUBE RECTIFIERS TO SUPERCONDUCTORS; FROM TRANS-ATLANTIC TELEGRAPH CABLES TO SATELLITE TV.



SHE SAW MORE IN HER 93 YEARS THAN MOST OF US WILL EVER READ ABOUT, LET ALONE LIVE THROUGH!



OF THOSE 93 YEARS IT IS MY HONOR TO HAVE BEEN HER GRANDSON FOR 35 OF THEM. SHE WAS MY MOTHER WHEN MOM HAD TO WORK. SHE WIPED MY NOSE AND PUT FOOD IN MY MOUTH. SHE LET ME PLAY WITH GRANDPA EVEN THOUGH SHE NEEDED HIM TO TAKE HER TO THE STORE. SHE WAS MY GRANDMA AND I WILL MISS HER IMMENSELY.



JUST LOOK AROUND THIS ROOM; SHE DID THIS. SHE IS RESPONSIBLE FOR BRINGING SO MANY GOOD PEOPLE INTO THIS WORLD AND TOGETHER TODAY. THIS IS HER LEGACY.



A Dedication To My Loving Wife, Stacey. Thank you for all you do for me!

Brad Paisley - I Thought I Loved You Then


I remember trying not to stare the night that I first met you
You had me mesmerized
3 weeks later in the front porch light taking 45 min to kiss you goodnight
I hadn’t told you yet but I thought I loved you then

Chorus
Now you’re my whole life now you’re my whole world
I just can’t believe the way I feel about you girl
Like a river meets the sea
Stronger than it’s ever been
We’ve come so far since that day
And I thought I loved you then.

I remember taking you back to right where I first met you
You were so surprised
There were people around
But I didn’t care I got down on one knee right there
And once again I thought I loved you then

Chorus
Now you’re my whole life now you’re my whole world
I just can’t believe the way I feel about you girl
Like a river meets the sea
Stronger than it’s ever been
We’ve come so far since that day
And I thought I loved you then.

I can just see you with a baby on the way
I can just see you when your hair is turning gray
What I can’t see is how I’m ever gonna love you more
But I’ve said that before.

Now you’re my whole life now you’re my whole world
I just can’t believe the way I feel about you girl
Well look back some day at this moment that we’re in
And I'll look at you and say I thought I loved you then
And I thought I loved you then...

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